Philippe Starck’s Super Yachts
Sailing Yacht A
VONDOM PIXEL SOFA
A vast prairie and snow-capped peaks serve as a dramatic setting for a home in the American West that Carney Logan Burke Architects designed for a retired couple.
The Dogtrot Residence is located near Jackson Hole, a Wyoming town known for its scenic landscape and world-class skiing. The home sits within a rural neighbourhood with flat, grassy sites surrounded by buttes and ranchland, with Mount Glory towering in the distance.
Designed by local firm Carney Logan Burke Architects (CLB Architects), the dwelling was built for a retired couple from Pittsburgh who were longtime visitors to Jackson. The clients desired a modern, unimposing residence for their 18-acre (7.2-hectare) property.
For the main dwelling, the architects conceived a long, low-slung volume topped with an asymmetrical gabled roof. The residence also features a detached garage, a potting shed and a series of terraces.
Exterior surfaces are clad in oxidised steel, helping the home blend with the agrarian landscape. Large expanses of glass bring in daylight while offering sweeping views of the terrain.
COTTAGE IN THE VINEYARD
The house is located in the municipality of Fontanars, on the outskirts of the village surrounded by large acreages. The project seeks the maximum environmental and landscape integration because of its border location between a zone of pine forests and the grapevine fields, being diluted practically in the vegetation. To this contributes the decision to develop the entire program in a single plant, in addition to the material chosen, which provides shade consistent with the place.
“This countryside retreat generated from the idea of a standard traditional rural house with its pitched roof, applying a new concept of space afterwards”. Ramón Esteve
The geometry consists in mapping the line edge that defines the traditional house to extrude it after, forming an envelope under which will be developed throughout the project. That line-concept, turned into a long concrete shell that organizes the dwellings ́ program and is crossed transversely by the rooms materialized as pine wood containers.
The project seeks the maximum integration landscape and environment, due to the location of the border between an area of pine forest and the fields.
The access to the plot is through a path surrounded by olive trees. In the background, you can see the house, hidden by groups of cypresses, poplars and pine trees. You enter the house through one of the wooden structures. The concrete central space is a fluid common area dominated by a big replace towards which all the rooms are opened. From the inside, the views are framed by the pine wood surfaces that intersect the central space. By being considered a second residence, both these structures and the porches can be totally locked when the house is not inhabited.
A wide porch, placed at the end of the house, completes the home. It provides a lounge area linked to a dual landscape, on one side the immediate views of the pine forest, on the other side those of the vineyard. The house is modulated by the timber planks of 20 cm. that built the wooden boxes and also the timber formwork for pouring concrete.
Also the pinewood furniture and the carpentry for this retreat have been specifically designed following the same modulation. Both materials, white concrete and timber, are coherent with the nature of the structure.
The energy saving is optimized thanks to the materials used and a thermal insulation of rock wool with great insulating ability. Also, the installation of lighting is energy-effcient due to a control system that optimizes the use of natural light.
The project pursues a monolithic image of the materials so it can express, in the same inner and outer way, a means to achieve essentiality.
Thus, both the concrete shell and the wooden boxes are presented in the same way inside and out, preserving materiality and texture.
The shell functions as a self-compacting reinforced concrete sandwich with isolation core.
Boxes made of pine wood are made according to a balloon frame system that structures them with a succession of uprights and crossbars, simplifying the execution of the same.
1880: THE MODERN MEMBER’S CLUB
Timothy Oulton Studio – the interiors and construction design studio of Timothy Oulton – showcases its largest project to date: 1880, the modern antidote to the typical members’ club.
Overlooking Robertson Quay in Singapore, 1880 occupies the third floor of the building that also houses the InterContinental Hotel. The 22,000 sq ft club takes its name from the decade the quay was established.
Founder Marc Nicholson and CEO Luke Jones wanted a design that would spark imagination and encourage unplanned conversations, and engaged Timothy Oulton Studio to do just that.
“Luxury is not about things, it’s about experiences, meaning and connection, and that’s what we’ve focussed on in 1880,” says Timothy Oulton.
Timothy Oulton Studio responded to the brief with a multi-sensorial design, seeking to activate and energise the senses at every turn. Entry is through a kaleidoscope tunnel, a portal that separates the outside world from the club. Ascending the escalator, members arrive at the Rose Quartz reception desk, a 1.5 ton rock crystal mined from Madagascar. This 25 million year old mystical “love stone” emits energy under pressure – the piezoelectric effect.
One of the club’s highlights is The Double, a casual café in the daytime, suitable for relaxing or holding a business meeting, which dramatically transforms into an intimate, seductive bar at night. As the sun goes down, a hidden, fully stocked bar shelf is lowered down from above, elegant lighting appears from the ceiling and the leather banquettes rotate to face the bar, cocooned by a sweeping silk curtain adorned with a golden dragon.
Creative solutions have also been employed in The Studio. Reclaimed mahogany flooring has been used to allow for the array of casual and formal activities that are to be held here, black velvet drapery can be pulled back to reveal an entire wall of antique mirror panels when a more glamorous atmosphere is called for, and inbuilt cupboards made from reclaimed English timber house the technical equipment for the cinema. In other areas of the club, customised metal screens can be moved easily, giving 1880 the freedom and flexibility it requires
For Timothy Oulton Studio, design is never just decoration. Authentic materials and craftsmanship are always the start. This is exemplified in the wine cellar forming the backdrop to Leonie’s restaurant. Burnt timber arches stand at just under 3m high, highly technical and time-intensive to produce. Multiple brass rods connect the arches, supporting 700 wine bottles, each one individually lit.
In the lobby, the Cabinet of Curiosities is filled with curios from Tim Oulton’s personal antiques collection, while in the members’ lounge, 360 antique English teapots are contrasted against a wall of reclaimed bricks etched with Chinese motifs. 1880 is built around the concept of colliding ideas, a place to forge unlikely connections. Old things need revisiting and rethinking, to be made relevant for today.
About Timothy Oulton Studio
Timothy Oulton Studio is the interiors and construction design studio of Timothy Oulton, visionary founder of his eponymous furniture and interiors company. The Timothy Oulton Studio has already completed a diverse range of end to end projects worldwide, including Gough’s on Gough restaurant in Hong Kong, Glazebrook House hotel in Devon, England, and the Lychee Garden in China.
HOTEL SAN FRANCISCO
LOCATION: SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA
DESIGNER: PAUL SCHULTE, PRISCILLA DOSIOU
THE BRIEF:THE NEW AUSTRALIAN OWNED BAR, HOTEL SAN FRANCISCO, IS SITUATED IN THE FINANCIAL DISTRICT OF SAN FRANCISCO. IT IS FANTASTICALLY BRIGHT WITH NEON LIGHTS, BSEATED SUPPLIED VELVET BARSTOOLS AND ARMCHAIRS. OUR BRASS TABLE TOPS AND FRAMES SPARKLE IN THE LIGHTS, AND THE RED BARSTOOLS ARE A WONDERFUL COMPLEMENT.
Chuan’s Kitchen II
On first impressions, it appears that the design of two new restaurants in Guangzhou by native studio Infinity Mind could not exist further apart. The first, a Sichuan hot pot restaurant that we covered last year, is a bright, almost holographic spatial revival of the hot pot culinary genre. The more recent – another Sichaun dining space – is a dimly-lit, earth-toned space built from reclaimed construction material. But a conceptual connection does exist between the two projects. In both locations, Infinity Mind’s design process was centred on finding a balance between traditional culture and contemporary aesthetics.
This is a recurrent theme in Chinese hospitality projects of the late. Through the design of a café in Zhengzhou, Moc Design Office sought to revive the younger generation’s interest in tea culture and calligraphy through a compellingly millennial-friendly space. Thirteen hours away, Beijing Wuxiang Space Architecture Design Studio animated a wellness-driven hotel – the world’s first ‘tea culture’ hospitality experience – by taking reference from the region’s centuries-long heritage in the industry. The more Western influence the country is exposed to, the more essential it seems that design help reignite the veneration for national customs.
Chuan’s Kitchen II reflects a similar eagerness to fortify pride in Chinese heritage through spatial design. Yingjing County is a region that’s been renowned for its black pottery-work for nearly 2000 years. To explore the design application of a typical manufacturing element from the practice, the studio used earthenware gaskets [a sealing device used to separate coal and greenware in the kiln] as the primary source of decoration. Made from the same material – white clay and anthracite – as finished products like utensils and cooking pots, the functional gaskets typically get discarded after seven or so firing processes. Infinity Mind saw a new potential for their use.
‘After nourishing China’s folk life for more than a hundred years, the flavour that came from the Shu (Sichuan) area suddenly disappeared, during the transition period of contemporary industrial civilization,’ the studio reflected. ‘It hit us that there ought to be some reflection about how to inherit this folk art.’
Their idea of inheritance? Surface coverings: the studio extracted the gaskets and used them to interlace and weave arcs into huge chain nets that connect with vertical iron walls enclosing the external façade and two dining areas. Working in unison, the effect is powerful: standing at over 20-m tall, the walls create a sense of impressive visual weight. The gaskets also have their place overhead, as the studio was able to customize them into pendant lamps.
But they weren’t the only design element that Infinity Mind reclaimed to create the restaurant’s surfaces. Using soil materials from a metro 40-m underground, the studio made wall and floor tiles for the bar area, inner wall and the entire ground of the space. Lighter than the chain nets in colour and in aesthetic mood, the juxtaposition of materials imparts harmony in the interiors.
Chuan’s Kitchen II serves as a reminder to locals that the handicraft and heritage – and cuisine – that they are familiar with is not only applicable to, but appropriate for contemporary settings. Furthermore, it proves that there remains a lot to learn from regional design understanding: designers can create stand-out spaces by referring to familiar roots rather than instantly grasping for what works well abroad. By using age-old techniques and discarded material in an innovative way, Infinity Mind forges a bond between generations of design – and people.
HI MISS RONG
Our favourite hot pot restaurant here in Amsterdam looks quite similar to what you’d find in a similar location back in the mainland: white walls and bamboo furniture, with the signature hood absorbing the strong smells of meat, spicy sauces and tofu that emerge from the tabletop cooker.
Our new favourite hot pot restaurant, though, looks nothing like that: with a rainbow of electroplated steel next to heavy slabs of sculptural white concrete that look suspended on air, Guangzhou’s Hi, Miss Rong looks more like a trippy Jem and the Holograms set than a folk-food spot.
To Infinity Mind, the studio behind the proposal, it makes perfect sense. Sichuan hot pot used to be a popular street food throughout the country, which vendors ran as informal operations. With the rapid urban growth of China, hot pot lagged behind the development of the contemporary hospitality industry, which has provided unique dining experiences to a younger generation less interested in traditional culture.
‘The current business model in China requires both popularity and branding,’ explained Infinity Mind’s Wang Xiaowen. ‘In such an environment, it’s important for small businesses or even traditional businesses to improve upon cultural tradition and innovate with contemporary aesthetics and address the need for social development. So, four us, this was a contemporary aesthetic experiment.’
It was also a material experiment – but also, in a way, both a calculated rejection of trends and ironically, an appeal to young diners interested in the photogenic qualities of the restaurants they favour. Exhibit A: the use of electroplated steel. The acid-like effect they achieved on the plates is not an industry standard. ‘Trend is a popular phenomenon, while fashion is something new that contains individual existence and value, that makes it different from other things,’ added Wang. ‘And the craft of making electroplated stainless steel is complex, and they can never be exactly duplicated… and that is a meaningful type of fashion.’
Exhibit B: the decorative cement tiles on the wall. The grey-white surfaces have linearly abstracted the symbolic attributes of each one of the five initial letters of the diner’s name in Pinyin, N H R X J. It’s a way to strengthen the links between the dish’s heritage and its modern-day iteration. The tables and chairs are also made in the same material and shade, which visibly reduces the thickness of concrete, so the elements look as if they were suspended on air – not what one would expect from the heavy aggregate.
Exhibit C: the diner’s name itself. While hot pot has become so ingrained in the national palate that it even spawned regional versions with hyper-local ingredients, the spicy and numbing vats actually hail from Chengdu. The location on everyone’s lips – that is, it has become a destination of pilgrimage for culinary tourism – is known as the City of Hibiscus for its flower symbol, the Brocade City due to its commercial production, and even the Panda City due to the first spotting of the cuddly creatures. But most commonly, it has historically been known for its geographical nickname, Rong. By adding a tongue-in-cheek Miss in front of it, like many things in China, the ancestral and the blossoming find a way to come together once more.